Happy Birthday, Smiley!

The smiley turns 25 today. :-)

Twenty-five years ago, Carnegie Mellon University professor Scott E. Fahlman says, he was the first to use three keystrokes — a colon followed by a hyphen and a parenthesis — as a horizontal "smiley face" in a computer message.

Link - via Digg

Newest 5
Newest 5 Comments

Hi, Miss C.

I am guilty of not being a CAREFUL READER.

Yes - I see NOW that the emoticon is what was being discussed, not the yellow smiley face in a circle.

I promise to be more careful in the future. hehe

Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Adam, if you're thinking about the yellow face smiley pictured, yes, that's a lot older. This anniversary is for the typed emoticon smiley. The history of the internet emoticon is rather well documented.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
You know who else has a birthday today? Samuel Johnson! Mister 'A Dictionary of the English Language' himself - it is indeed a doubly-momentous day for language and communication!

As to the smileys, it's interesting to think about how different online communication would be today without them. I wonder what shorthand might have popped up to indicate, "Please don't shoot me in the face, that was supposed to be a joke" if it weren't for smileys? Somehow "j/k" just isn't nearly as enjoyable ...

(I must take issue, though, with the "newer" smileys thrust upon us by IM progams - the first time I used a smiley in AIM 6.0 and all those giant transparent happy faces suddenly cascaded across my screen it startled the bejeezus out of me - simple and unsurprising is GOOD imo when it comes to smileys =P
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Login to comment.

Email This Post to a Friend
"Happy Birthday, Smiley!"

Separate multiple emails with a comma. Limit 5.


Success! Your email has been sent!

close window

This website uses cookies.

This website uses cookies to improve user experience. By using this website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

I agree
Learn More